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Aug. 19, 2010

KATY RESIDENT ARRESTED FOR DISTRIBUTION OF CHILD PORNOGRAPHY

(HOUSTON) - A Katy resident  has been charged with distributing child pornography, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

Justin W. Lewis, 40, was taken into custody by officers of the Houston Police Department at his Katy, Texas, home on Aug. 18, 2010. He was transferred into federal custody this morning as a consequence of an FBI’s Innocent Images Task Force investigation resulting in the filing of a criminal complaint accusing him of distributing child pornography via the Internet in or about July 2010. Lewis is expected to make his initial appearance before a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Houston later today.  The United States will seek to hold Lewis is federal custody without bond pending further criminal proceedings.

According to the federal criminal complaint filed on Aug. 18, 2010, Lewis was allegedly making child pornography available to others through the use of peer-to-peer software over the Internet via his home computer. Investigating agents downloaded multiple images of child pornography allegedly from Lewis via the software which included children under the age of 12 being sexually violated by adults, children under the age of 12 in positions which caused their genitalia to be displayed in a lewd/lascivious manner, as well a child being penetrated by a foreign object.

Distribution of child pornography carries a minimum sentence of five years imprisonment with a maximum of 20 years imprisonment and a maximum fine of $250,000. Additionally, the penalty upon conviction for distributing child pornography also includes a maximum life term of supervised release during which a sentencing court can impose any number of special conditions designed to protect children such as limitations on computer use and Internet access. A conviction for distributing child pornography requires registration as a sex offender.

This case brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.

Assistant United States Attorney Sherri L. Zack is prosecuting the case.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.

 

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